A collective gasp echoed across the Oscars red carpet when Saoirse Ronan stepped in front of the cameras. Not only because the Little Women actress was a vision in her lavender peplum Gucci gown, but also because of the new (and permanent) accessory draped across her forehead: baby bangs — which her hairstylist cut hours before the show.
According to Ronan's hairstylist, Adir Abergel, the style inspiration was a young Audrey Hepburn. "Saoirse has always wanted bangs, so I showed her a lot of images — from Bettie Page to Rooney Mara — and we talked about the different variety of bangs and how you can tell a story through them," Adir tells Refinery29. "She tended to gravitate toward the micro bangs from early Audrey."
For anyone inspired by Ronan's modern take on the classic cut, Abergel tells us the key is in the softly-feathered finish, which comes from a process called notching. "Rather than scissoring straight up, you want to cut on an angle, almost at 9 o'clock or 3 o'clock," Abergel explains. "It's a modern way of doing micro bangs that feels deconstructed."
After the bangs were cut, the English actress was, in a word, obsessed. "She loved [the bangs]," says Abergel. "Immediately, she loved them. She said: 'I haven’t had bangs since I was a little girl — how dope is this?'" From there, the award-show styling was simple: Abergel swept Ronan's blonde hair into a chignon and topped off the look with a 2020 take on butterfly clips (which, like her gown, were custom Gucci).
Abergel also gave Ronan some tips on how to style her new fringe, and the secret comes down to two key products: Virtue's volumising primer and dry shampoo. (Abergel is the creative director for the brand.) "I told Saoirse to spray the primer all over her bangs after the shower, and then to go in with a blowdryer and a Denman brush, pushing the bangs back and fourth to get rid of any cowlicks," he explains. "That’s all you need to do. For the next day, if the roots get oily, that’s when you use the dry shampoo."
It's a good tip, considering that Ronan will likely be out pretty late, and we can guess tomorrow will likely be a dry-shampoo kind of day for the nominee.